Youth often benefit from gaining more skills to become marketable and find out what strikes their interest, although career exploration may not always require earning a college degree. The Home Depot announced that The Home Depot Foundation and a trade training nonprofit partner called Home Builders Institute (HBI), are launching a strategic partnership with 100 Black Men of America Inc. The goal is to increase skilled trade training for Black youth. Skill-building workshops, work experience, internship opportunities, industry-recognized PACT certifications, and preparation for youth to pursue meaningful careers will be provided, according to the announcement. Home Depot also said that in the fall, the three organizations will launch a pilot trades training program to serve marginalized communities in Atlanta, Philadelphia, and San Francisco. The program will be facilitated through 100 Black Men of America’s existing afterschool programs.
“As we work to fill the nearly 300,000 open career opportunities across the skilled trades industry, we have to continue advocating for the inclusion of diverse talent,” Shannon Gerber, executive director of The Home Depot Foundation, said in a press release. “The Foundation is energized to team up with Home Builders Institute, 100 Black Men of America, Inc. and The Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurs to focus on eliminating racial and social inequities through education and workforce development programs.”
Chuck Baker, chairman of the board for 100 Black Men of the Bay Area, stated that the grant from Home Depot will help the organization to expand its youth workforce and career readiness initiatives with a specific focus on the building trades that are vital to the economic recovery.
Additionally, The Home Depot Foundation introduced its $250,000 Path to Pro scholarship program. To celebrate the students of Skills USA’s National Signing Day, $30,000 in scholarships were provided. According to the program’s website, The Foundation pledged to invest $50 million in training the next generation of skilled tradespeople and bridging the opportunity gap through it. The scholarships partially require applicants to be a high school senior, a high school graduate, or possess a GED. The website stated that applicants must focus on carpentry, electrical, HVAC, plumbing, or construction management training.
Specialized jobs that require training often pay more. An HVAC technician, plumber, landscape designer, and a boilermaker are just a small sampling of jobs Indeed listed as some of the highest-paying trade careers.